3 Tips on How to Become a Magnetic Leader

Guest post from Roberta Matuson:

Lots of people think they are magnetic leaders when they are anything but. I define magnetic leaders as those who appear to effortlessly attract talent that will stick around.

I open my book, The Magnetic Leader: How Irresistible Leaders Attract Employees, Customers and Profits, with the results of a recent TinyPulse New Year Employee Report, where one thousand working Americans shared their workplace wishes for the New Year. Participants were asked what one thing they wished they could change about their manager. The second most popular answer was to have their manager quit. This response aligns with what I see in my consulting practice. Clearly some work needs to be done in this area.

Here’s how you can begin your transition from manager to magnetic leader.

Shift your mindset
 

People don’t start out their management career with the intention of being anything less than a stellar leader. However, things happen. Be open to the possibility that you may need to do rethink your approach to management.

Start by asking your people if they’d recommend your department to others, as a great place to work. Anything less than an immediate “Absolutely!” is a no. If that’s the case, follow up by asking, “What can I do differently so you’ll feel comfortable doing so?” Then take steps to make these changes.

Work on your communication skills

One of the seven attributes of magnetic leaders that I mention in my book is strong communication. Magnetic leaders communicate frequently and clearly.

How as a leader do you rate yourself in terms of communication skills? In a 2002 survey of 1,104 employees in organizations around the United States, 86% said their bosses thought they were good communicators, but only 17% said their bosses actually communicated effectively. Clearly there’s a failure here to communicate.

Let’s face it. Many of us could certainly increase how frequently we communicate with team members, as well as those around us. Try this. The next time you are tempted to send a quick text to a team member, whose desk is around the corner, do something completely unexpected. Walk over and have a conversation. Small changes like this will make a big difference in how others perceive you as a leader.

Put others before yourself

Magnetic leaders put the needs of their people before their own. Here’s what I mean by this. Let’s say you have an employee who is supposed to stay late to handle a customer who is calling from the west coast. This employee is a single parent who gets anxious when she isn’t home to help her kids with their homework. A magnetic leader would offer to take the call on her behalf, so that she could leave on time.

Think about what you and your people have on your calendars this week and look at ways you can put their needs before their own. Pick one or two things and it won’t be long before it feels natural to put the needs of others before your own.

© Matuson Consulting, 2017. All Rights Reserved.

Roberta Matuson, The Talent Maximizer® and President of Matuson Consulting, helps world-class organizations like General Motors, New Balance and Microsoft achieve dramatic growth and market leadership through the maximization of talent. Order a copy of her new book, The Magnetic Leader: How Irresistible Leaders Attract Employees, Customers and Profits. She’s also the author of Talent Magnetism: How to Build a Workplace That Attracts and Keeps the Best and the bestselling book, Suddenly in Charge: Managing Up, Managing Down, Succeeding All Around. Sign up to receive her free newsletter, The Talent Maximizer. Follow her on Twitter.

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